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View Full Version : Snowboard/Ski Roof Rack for Fiat Abarth with Sunroof



Brokernum1
11-20-2014, 02:05 AM
Hi,

I am trying to find a roof rack for my 2012 Fiat Abarth.
I called Fiat of Manhattan and was advised by the parts department that a roof rack for my car is not an option because of the sunroof. Can anyone confirm this or guide me to a website where I can find a roof rack that can be installed without drilling holes in the car. The purpose of the roof rack is to carry snowboards and skis to and from the mountain.

Thank you

odanota
11-20-2014, 03:13 AM
You can use a Thule rack and that should clear the sunroof just fine. I have a full rack on my car but I do not have a sunroof. The rack clips onto the side of the car, no drilling needed.

jguerdat
11-20-2014, 08:53 AM
If you can get the dealer to sell you the rack anyways, it will fit/work fine. It'll be up to you to ensure you don't use the sunroof, though, and any damage caused by doing so will be on you.

Brokernum1
11-20-2014, 04:17 PM
You can use a Thule rack and that should clear the sunroof just fine. I have a full rack on my car but I do not have a sunroof. The rack clips onto the side of the car, no drilling needed.

Hi,
Thanks for the info. If you don't mind, can you send me a picture of your car so i can get a visual idea of how it looks installed?

jguerdat
11-21-2014, 08:50 AM
Here's one with kayaks:

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Brokernum1
12-01-2014, 01:05 AM
Does the car with Kayak have a sunroof?

jguerdat
12-01-2014, 08:03 AM
Nope. The key is to not open the sunroof. It's opening it that will cause problems.

Brokernum1
12-03-2014, 12:17 AM
Got it. I Ordered a roof rack online. By the way, is it hard to install?
I plan on doing it myself.

Crenuh
12-03-2014, 12:33 AM
Hi, which rack did you order?
I have a fiat 500 sport with a sunroof and the spoiler on the back,
so I'm having a very hard time trying to find a rack that might work!

jguerdat
12-03-2014, 08:33 AM
Order the Fiat rack - it's a Thule and it will fit fine. The Abarth has a hatch spoiler and it's not even close. Just be sure to NOT try to open the sunroof or interference will occur.

It's not hard to install once you're used to how Thule makes things. I've always used Yakima so the Thule method of installing the stretch kit was a bit confusing (Yakima's design is much better and easier, IMNSHO). Be aware that the rear clips (not the rear bar feet) can be moderately difficult to get pushed into the door opening. The adjustment screws could be a bit longer so they don't become completely unthreaded so you have to back them out as much as possible and pull on the extension bar to get the clip over the edge. It becomes obvious once you've done it a couple of times. As for attaching the extension bar, there's a small movable clip on the bottom of the racks that has to be held with a finger or two while lining up the parts to hook. That's where the Yakima method is preferable since nothing moves but them Yakima doesn't make anything to fit.

It took me a couple of hours and much swearing to get the rack on the first time. Now it takes me 15 minutes and is easy. Maybe setting it up off the car first would help some.

AbarthHeights
12-03-2014, 10:34 AM
Got it. I Ordered a roof rack online. By the way, is it hard to install?
I plan on doing it myself.

Closely watching this thread. How versatile is snowboard/ski rack? Could it be used for other items too?

AbarthHeights
12-03-2014, 10:42 AM
These are custom made. http://www.ebay.com/itm/Fiat-500-Classic-Roof-Rack-/161463059866?fits=Make%3AFiat%7CModel%3A500

The demo fiat has a sunroof.

jguerdat
12-04-2014, 09:36 AM
Closely watching this thread. How versatile is snowboard/ski rack? Could it be used for other items too?

The rack is just the rack. You add whatever attachments you want to carry your stuff. Generally you'd use Thule pieces but many Yakima parts should work, too, if you're already invested in that system. I'm using Volvo pieces from our ex-C30, which also uses Thule as the manufacturer.

jguerdat
12-04-2014, 09:37 AM
These are custom made. http://www.ebay.com/itm/Fiat-500-Classic-Roof-Rack-/161463059866?fits=Make%3AFiat%7CModel%3A500

The demo fiat has a sunroof.

You can get the Fiat/Thule rack for significantly less.

Brokernum1
12-05-2014, 01:20 AM
I paid just under $330 for a used roof rack, short roof adapter, and Ski/snowboard carrier by Thule.

Purchased the roof rack for $220 shipped from another Fiat owner who paid close to $500 7 months ago at his local Fiat dealer. Has no more use for it. The Ski/Snowboard carrier i purchased separately on ebay for $116 shipping included instead of $215 from Mopar.

Switched my tires over last weekend to Bridgestone Blizzak's WS60 snow tires. They are excellent tires. My car plowed through everything last winter. We had some nasty storms in 2013.
Did not get stuck even once; highly recommend.

Final challenge will be to successfully install the rack on my car.

P.S: Jeff, thank you very much for taking the time to guide us through this process. Your help is greatly appreciated.
Too bad you don't live close to NY. Would of been awesome if you could help me install.

Brokernum1
12-05-2014, 01:16 PM
I purchased a Thule Roof Rack, Removable Part # TRAB4711 from another Fiat owner who had no more use for it in California.
However, i also needed to purchase a Ski/Snowboard carrier separately Part # 91725U. The carrier mounts on the roof rack frame.
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Spent $330 total for both.

AbarthHeights
12-05-2014, 10:50 PM
I purchased a Thule Roof Rack, Removable Part # TRAB4711 from another Fiat owner who had no more use for it in California.
However, i also needed to purchase a Ski/Snowboard carrier separately Part # 91725U. The carrier mounts on the roof rack frame.
15703

Spent $330 total for both.

Grateful if you could share your installation experience. I am tempted to get one too, also have a nero abarth with sunroof.

Brokernum1
12-05-2014, 11:04 PM
Sure. Will keep you posted after i install it.

Brokernum1
12-13-2014, 02:22 AM
Received the roof rack yesterday and ended up installing it today.
All of the parts were assembled since the rack was removed from another fiat.
All i had to do was measure the distances, set the roof rack in place and secure clamps with the wrenches that came with.
The hardest part was properly securing the short roof adapter clamps to the driver and passenger door frames. However in the end -1.5 hours later- the job was done.
Now my car is finally ready to hit the slopes.

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jguerdat
12-13-2014, 08:27 AM
You'll get the time down with a couple of un/reinstalls. Takes me 15 minutes or so now. Same issue with the rear clamps but once you know where to put your hands things go much better.

Brokernum1
12-13-2014, 11:19 PM
Any chance someone knows where i can purchase extra clamps and bolts for Thule's 91725 Universal Flat Top fully-locki*ng ski and snowboard carrier other than Thule's website.
One of the plastic clamps cracked and one of the bolts pin heads bent to the point where the allen key is no longer able to fasten or unfasten it.
Learn from my mistake DO NOT TIGHTEN THE CLAMPS TOO MUCH OR THEY WILL BREAK!
Unfortunately, Thule provides poor quality plastic clamps to secure the ski/snowboard carrier to the roof rack.
This mistake is going to cost me an extra $40 because i need to order a replacement clamp and bolt from Thule's website.
Could not find it anywhere else. If anyone knows where i can find them cheaper please let me know.

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jguerdat
12-14-2014, 09:24 AM
Have you tried a local dealer for Thule? REI, EMS etc. must have stores near you. Give 'em a call and see if they can help.

Brokernum1
12-14-2014, 06:47 PM
Tried REI but they stopped carrying thule products in their retail store. I can only purchase thule products from their website but they do not sell clamps or bolts separately. Tried a couple of other online sellers but with no success so far.
All I need is one two plastic clamps and one bolt to finish the job.

JimmyTestarossa
12-14-2014, 07:05 PM
Maybe a decent local bicycle shop that carries Thule products could help?

I know some of the bigger sporting goods chains carry some of these products - Dicks Sporting Goods, Sports Authority, etc. There is also Rack Attack;

http://local.rackattack.com/Thule_Dealers_Manhattan_NY-p1721914-Manhattan_NY.html

jguerdat
12-15-2014, 08:34 AM
It's possible that you could get a "close enough" bolt from a well-stocked hardware store. Could you make (or have someone make) a clamp for you? Is it the bottom or the top that's broken? AT $40 for parts, it's starting to just be worthwhile to buy a new carrier...

Brokernum1
12-15-2014, 11:59 PM
I shmoozed a customer service rep on the phone today from Thule's warranty department and was able to get two bottom clamps and two bolts shipped for FREE!
Saved the $40 fee after all. Now all i need is for the parts to arrive by Friday before i leave for my snowboarding trip. Yes, Yes its that time of the year when people are in a good mood and more willing to help.

jkoutrouba
12-16-2014, 12:08 AM
What's the spacing between the bars (front to back)? I'm contemplating a cargo box, but there is a minimum spread requirement.

jguerdat
12-16-2014, 07:54 AM
I shmoozed a customer service rep on the phone today from Thule's warranty department and was able to get two bottom clamps and two bolts shipped for FREE!
Saved the $40 fee after all. Now all i need is for the parts to arrive by Friday before i leave for my snowboarding trip. Yes, Yes its that time of the year when people are in a good mood and more willing to help.

Ya-friggin'-HOO! Good job!

jguerdat
12-16-2014, 07:56 AM
What's the spacing between the bars (front to back)? I'm contemplating a cargo box, but there is a minimum spread requirement.

IIRC, it's 600mm or not quite 24 inches.

jkoutrouba
12-16-2014, 10:12 AM
IIRC, it's 600mm or not quite 24 inches.

Thanks!

Brokernum1
12-22-2014, 03:51 PM
Tried the roof rack and snowboard/ski carrier out for the first time this past weekend.
Secured a snowboard with bindings and a pair of skis along with their poles to the carrier.
Drove from NYC to Binghamton and back. Driving speed was anywhere from 60-90 MPH throughout the trip.
No problems with the rack whatsoever. However, it does get quite noisy due to the rack cutting the wind gust at high speeds.

jguerdat
12-23-2014, 08:02 AM
You might wanna consider a fairing to help cut wind noise. Obviously, it depends on where the noise is coming from - if it's from the board/skis, the fairing may do little to help.

Also, consider locks - cheap insurance. Just be sure to install them on the extender, not the rear bar. I had a hit of trouble getting the plugs out of the extender clips but some "persuasion" helped.

InFuZiOn
12-24-2014, 07:55 PM
I purchased a Thule Roof Rack, Removable Part # TRAB4711 from another Fiat owner who had no more use for it in California.
However, i also needed to purchase a Ski/Snowboard carrier separately Part # 91725U. The carrier mounts on the roof rack frame.
15703

Spent $330 total for both.

So wait you have to get the roof rack frame AND the carrier seperately? I thought it was all just one...

jguerdat
12-25-2014, 09:53 AM
The rack is the rack. Then you add accessories according to your carrying needs.

Brokernum1
01-08-2015, 11:45 PM
A picture of the car with one Snowboard and one pair of skis plus poles.
Can easily fit another snowboard with bindings and set of skis.
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